Labour Party MP Jim McGovern had Dundonians of a certain vintage reaching for their record players and vinyl favourites with a fond tear in their eye today as they fondly remembered the glory years of Dundee Labour.
The nostalgia was re generated after watching Jim defend his decision on the stv news to claim £23.90 for a rail ticket from Dundee to Glasgow to attend a constituency meeting.
This was to be the first leg of his trip back down to that London Parliament but IPSA said NO. Stop there. You can't do that as it's against the rules.
IPSA ( Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority ) was supposed to be the solution to the expenses scandal of a few years ago where MPs' filled their boots at will. Seriously troughing at our expense. The IPSA rulings were supposed to be final. Unless someone took issue with them. Like Jim.
They originally planned to let him pay for his own flight to London as well but relented and gave him £249.45 for the flight costs.
Jim still wasn't happy so challenged IPSA.
Judge Berner ruled that the ticket had not been “incurred in the performance of Mr McGovern’s parliamentary duties”.
Cut a long story short. The legal costs came to £27,000 and even though Jim lost the case it's us who lost because we're paying our side of the challenge. The unions will cover Jim's side of the challenge
Jim said that it would have been cheaper for him to take the Glasgow route rather than fly from Dundee. I can agree with that. Costs a fortune from Dundee airport unless you book way in advance. But Jim, once you challenge IPSA then they have to defend themselves and lawyers charge more per hour than a flight from Dundee would have cost. You could have hired a private helicopter from Dundee for £27,000.
I watched Jim on stv news tonight and noticed that he had a large poster of Frank Sinatra in his office. So without further ado here's a song for Jim....